Funded through Interreg IVB's Strategic Initiatives Programme, Energetic Algae (EnAlgae) is a four year project which combines the expertise and resources of 19 partners over seven countries in order to address sustainable pathways for Algal Bioenergy.
The project is extremely timely as EC legislation has come into effect which increases the proportion of energy generated from renewable sources (EC Directive 2009/28/EC) and provides a clear incentive for Europe (particular the North West who account for over 40 per cent of Europe's GHG Emissions) to reduce its current reliance on fossil fuels. By developing sustainable algal biotechnologies as part of an integrated strategy for bioenergy production and GHG mitigation BCU is leading in researching one of the solutions to the low carbon agenda.
Dr Lynsey Melville is the project manager for the project and was responsible for securing its success in the competitive bidding process. She described EnAlgae as: "A fantastic opportunity to demonstrate the results of our own research in this field and contribute our knowledge and undertake further research with the transnational networks in order to maximise benefits both locally and Europe-wide for the low carbon agenda."
The funded project with a budget of over €14.5 million has an overall aim to reduce carbon emissions and dependency on unsustainable energy sources in the North West European member states. It will be achieved through accelerating the development and use of algal-based biomass, bioenergy and GHG mitigation and bioremediation technologies from pilot phase to application and out to the market.
The 19 partner network designing and delivering EnAlgae will develop and exchange best practices and collate input from policy makers, regulators and other stakeholders and develop a sectoral technology roadmap. Birmingham City University's ICT decision support tool is then to be implemented in order to guide sustainable expansion of the algal bioenergy sector in the North-West European region.
Bio-energy is one of the key themes for the Centre for Low Carbon Research and the combination of fundamental research into alternative energy sources and research into the reduction of unsustainable energy dependency is directly in line with the interests of the university.
The project has also linked Birmingham City University to a valuable network of partners and the knowledge exchanged during the project can feed directly back into curriculum development for our students benefit.
Those wishing to learn more about the EnAlgae project should contact the Research Team in the first instance on 0121 331 6858.